The best sex happens with great communication. Here's how.
Starting any new relationship is scary!
But perhaps the scariest part is the sex talk.
Sure, going on that first date might seem intimidating at first, but at least you know it's normal. For most people, however, talking about safe sex is something they're either embarrassed, uncomfortable or ashamed to talk about.
But it's important to talk about expectations and safety before sex happens — because it's not going to happen in the heat of the moment.
In fact, a study published in the British Medical Journal found that men are more likely to forgo using a condom if they find a woman highly attractive. So that speaks to the level of logic people are operating under when feeling hot and heavy!
No matter the degree to which your new partner finds you attractive, reality is you don't want to have to stop in the middle of a passionate moment only to find out neither of you is prepared for safer sex.
In our latest Experts video (which can be seen above) Senior VP of YourTango Experts Melanie Gorman asked a group of love and relationship Experts the best way for a new couple to bring up the safe sex talk.
The responses from our team of Experts — Melissa White, Kira Gould, Susan Bratton and John Gray — explain how to make it less awkward, why it's so important, and what the safe sex talk should really be about.
So why is the sex talk so important?
Sex is supposed to be about both people involved, not a one-way street. While many people think otherwise, the truth is safe sex can be fun — if it's done right. And the only way to make sure you're doing it right is to talk about it.
You might be thinking that as long as you bring a condom, does it really matter about their sexual history (or your own)? But here's a fact: condoms don't protect against everything.
Let's repeat that because it's that important: CONDOMS DO NOT PROTECT AGAINST EVERYTHING!
So yes, you can bring a condom and hope it's enough, but is it really worth the risk of getting sexually transmitted diseases?
Okay, then exactly what IS the safe sex talk?
Yes, it's about sexual history, condoms and birth control pills. But it's more than finding out who should bring the condoms, what size and what type (yes, there a lot of different types of condoms!).
It's also about your fantasies and your boundaries. What turns you on? What are you uncomfortable with trying? It might even involve coming up with a "safe word".
The important thing is you both know what's expected, so that when the time comes, it's as magical as it should be.
How can I bring up the topic without it becoming really awkward?
Time for some honesty: there's no way to take out 100% of the awkwardness. That just comes with human nature and the topic at hand.
Even if you're totally comfortable with sex and your sexual history, it's still a little awkward to randomly bring it up to someone you haven't known for very long.
But here are a few tips to try to make it more comfortable for you and your partner:
1- Be casual.
Let is flow from your conversation. Don't let it go from "Do you like your food?" to "What do you like to do in bed?".
Be smooth and maybe throw in a compliment about how attracted to the other person you are, so they know your questions are coming from a place of care.
2- Be direct.
At the same time, don't be too subtle. Things can get lost in translation when you have to interpret what someone else is saying.
Be upfront in both your answers and in your questions. While that might seem awkward now, it'll be a lot more awkward if you have to stop to ask them in the middle of the act.
3- Keep contact.
Don't be afraid to hold their hand or to really look them in the eyes.
Show your partner that you're not ashamed of the thought of sleeping with them. Let them feel loved and comfortable and you'll see how easily the conversation can be.